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How do you build?

princedravenprincedraven Member Posts: 3,764
edited May 2011 in Building and Techniques
May seem a silly question, but how do most people build (specifically larger sets)?
Do you build on the floor? At a table?
Do you sort pieces first and then build or just empty the bags and get going?
Do you put bricks into pots or just lay them all out somewhere?
Do you build a little at a time over hours, days? Or do you have to finish it once started?
Do you watch TV or listen to music whilst building, or is building your only focus?
Do you have any pre-build rituals? Wash hands? Turn phone off? Anything else weird?

Just curious :)


  • StuBoyStuBoy Member Posts: 623
    I like to shower first! Probably because I have fond memories as a child playing with lego in my pyjamas in the evenings! Also only really build at night, unless I'm building with my son.
  • pantenkindpantenkind Member Posts: 258
    I have a breakfast bar 4x8 that I build on. On smaller sets I just kind of dump the pieces onto this custom tray I made and go. On larger sets I do sort most of the bigger pieces and then some I just sort by color. I have my tray I use for all the small pieces and just kind of go from there. I have built the death star here so I think it could accomodate most builds (though I do wonder if I could actually do the ucs falcon here as it may be the straw that breaks my tables back so to speak). I also usually have the tv on as I can see it from my perch, mostly for background noise though as I dont really watch. And finally I am the type that once I start I like to finish. There have been exceptions of course but as a rule of thumb I try to make sure I can complete the build in one sitting if possible.
  • Si_UKNZSi_UKNZ Member Posts: 4,179
    Usually on the sofa watching TV; I part it out into 1,2 or 3 'really useful' trays,

    and build on a 20L 'really useful' tray.

    I have the model Im working on in the 20L tray on my knee with misc bits all around looseand the rest sorted in the tray compartments beside me.

    Unless of course its a big model in which case on the floor or table + lots of backache.
  • korkor Member Posts: 392
    I sit on the floor just like when I was kid!

    If I'm just building with no direction in mind I don't typically pull a lot of parts ahead of time. If its a bigger build then I try to go into it with a good idea of what I'll need. I pull all of that stuff before I start.

    I really like to build in the summertime. We didn't have central air when I was a kid (I don't think most people did 30+ years ago) so I have a lot of memories of sitting in front of a box fan with the windows open and working on a Castle or Town layout. Thats always kind of stuck with me.

    Sometimes I listen to music but nothing to aggressive or I feel like I have to build faster! Most of the time I just like to let me mind wonder while I build.

  • PaulTRPaulTR Member Posts: 115
    I don't really have any pre-building rituals, except that I will use the bathroom before I build larger sets (I like to build sets in one sitting without any interruptions :)

    As for where I build, it's usually on the floor in my basement. It's quiet, and in the summer, it's the coolest place in the house. In the winter, I still build in the basement: My hands get sweaty in the heat (my dad likes to keep it at 70 farenheight/21 celsius) so I like to bundle up and build in the cold.

    I don't rip open all the bags and sort them at the same time; instead, I like to dump the bags out and only open them in the order the instructions tell me to. That way, it stretches out the "Ooo! Look at this piece!" moments and makes the building more enjoyable for me.

    When I'm done building, I like to take the set ustairs to my room, and try to find room where to put it. Weirdly enough, that's probably my favorite part of the whole experience, as I gleefuly get to re-organize my sets to accommodate the new-comer.
  • pantboypantboy Member Posts: 211
    when i build with my 6 year old son i usually lie on his bedroom floor, mainly because when we build together my job is to be one step ahead of him in the instructions and have the next set of pieces ready while he does the fun bits, the pieces from the required bags are tipped into an unturned lid of a previous delivery from lego [email protected]

    i recently built the death star (my pride and joy) at the kitchen table, but i was a bit cramped for space on a couple of occasions, and even managed to knock a box with at least a couple of hundred pieces on the floor, it's amazing how far a 1x1 tile can travel and how many parts can fit underneath a fridge. the upper floors were too high to build sitting down at a table so i had to stand up, i didn't do any pre sorting this time either, i used the same box lid i always use, and tipped all the relevant bags into this plus a shoe box for the very small pieces, the build was done over 4 weekends, 1 bag each day, all while listening to the radio (mixture of football commentary if available or music)
  • wander099wander099 Member Posts: 114
    I have a large storage bin under my bed and I use the lid to organize the pieces. I build the actual model at my desk. Sometimes I watch TV or listen to music as background noise.
  • princedravenprincedraven Member Posts: 3,764
    @Si, thanks for the links on the 'Really Useful' trays they look great. Definately getting myself some of those.
  • trypticontrypticon Member Posts: 61
    I prefer to keep going until the end once I get started. I don't sort the pieces out, because I feel they've already been sorted well enough in the bags they came in, and I don't want to delay the building process by spending X amount of time partnering up pieces with others of its kind.

    I'll pour the bags out one by one on the floor surrounding me for each portion of the instruction I'm working on. Then I proceed to build the set up until it's finished. This helps me time how long it takes me for each individual set, although I really only care about that in relation to the larger sets that I've had over the years.

    I'm not going to claim this is the best method of building things up, because it does get bad sometimes when it comes to sets with massive piece counts, like the UCS Millenium Falcon. The process seems to go quickly enough when I have thoroughly looked through the contents of all the bags I've dumped onto the floor, and know where everything is.
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